Pregnancy Care Tips - Trimester by Trimester

Pregnancy Care Tips - Trimester by Trimester

Every trimester of your pregnancy is different. With the baby growing and developing, your body changes every month to create the perfect environment to keep the baby safe. Of course, these changes are wonderful. But, you will need to learn about different ways to manage the discomfort that comes with these changes.

Here are some tips, trimester by trimester to help you keep yourself and your baby healthy through the pregnancy.

First Trimester Care Tips 

First Trimester

Significant changes in the Mother’s Body

The first trimester begins when your last period starts and continues until week 13. This is when you discover that you are pregnant. As you progress into the end of the second month you will see significant bodily changes as mentioned below

Weight: The weight does not increase a lot in the first trimester as the baby is still quite small in size. Typically, the average weight gain in the first trimester is between 1.5kg to 2kg. Some women may also lose weight because of morning sickness and nausea.

Symptoms: Most symptoms are hormone related to this stage. The hormones HGG and progesterone are responsible for most of the symptoms:

  • Morning sickness
  • Mood swings
  • Pigmentation of the skin
  • Tenderness and soreness of the breasts
  • Aversion to certain foods
  • Fatigue
  • Metallic taste in the mouth

Physical Changes: The physical changes in this stage are not very significant. You will notice the following changes:

  • The breasts become larger and heavier.
  • Around halfway through the second month, the baby bump appears.
  • Most of the weight is gained around the abdomen and buttocks.


Sleep Cycle: The hormonal changes will disturb your sleep cycle. Although you feel tired all the time, you may find it harder to actually fall asleep.

Significant Changes in the Baby

In the first trimester, the baby goes from being a fertilized cell to a peach-sized ball that sprouts limbs. Some of the most significant changes in this trimester are as follows:

  • Around week 10, the limbs begin to sprout.
  • The skin forms from the 5th week onwards.
  • The intestines begin to form by the 8th week.
  • Sense of touch develops around the 8th week.
  • Optic nerves form in the 4th week and the retina starts forming around the 8th week.
  • The heart begins to beat by the 5th week.
  • The brain will begin to control certain movements by the 8th week.
  • Muscles begin to form and the body is able to produce white blood cells.

Care During the First Trimester of Pregnancy

Support your baby’s development and your changing body with these simple tips.

General Health

  • You do not have to drastically increase calorie consumption. Maintain it at 1800 calories each day.
  • The most important nutrients in this trimester are – proteins, fiber, vitamins and minerals, folic acid, iron, and calcium.
  • To prevent heartburn and constipation, eat frequent, smaller meals.
  • Take a pregnancy supplement.
  • Continue to stay active and pursue moderate exercises.
  • In the case of soreness of the body, taking warm baths are recommended.
  • Stay hydrated
  • Avoid stressful activities.
  • Quit smoking, drinking, and consumption of caffeine.

Symptoms that should be checked

  • Heavy vaginal bleeding
  • Severe pain in the abdomen
  • Burning sensation when you urinate
  • Fever over 101 degrees.
  • Abnormal swelling of arms and legs

Medical Tests

  • The first test will include an internal exam along with a pap smear and a urine test.
  • Following that, your weight and blood pressure will be checked routinely.
  • An ultrasound is done to check the health of the baby.
  • Fetal heart rate will be monitored form the 2nd month onwards.
  • A detailed medical history of the family is recorded.
  • Around the 10th and 13th week, genetic test may be recommended to check for issues like Downs Syndrome.

Read More : How to take Bath During Pregnancy


Second Trimester Care Tips

Second Trimester

The second trimester lasts from the 14th week of pregnancy until the 27th week. This is when most pregnancy symptoms like morning sickness, nausea, and fatigue will subside as the body gets accustomed to the hormones. However, several other changes take place to accommodate the growing baby.

Significant Changes in the Mother’s Body

Weight: Weight increases rapidly in this trimester with an approximate increase of 0.5 to 1kg each week.


  • Congestion due to increased blood flow to the mucous membranes.
  • Milk swelling of the limbs.
  • Bleeding gums because of increased blood volume.
  • Cramps in the legs.
  • Varicose veins
  • Dizziness
  • Numbness or tingling sensation of the hands.
  • Itchy skin as it stretches with the growing size of the belly.
  • Back, groin, abdomen and thing pain because of the growing baby.

Physical Changes

  • The belly looks bigger.
  • Breasts are heavier and feel swollen.
  • Skin around the nipples darkens due to hormones.
  • A dark line from the middle of the belly down to the pubic bone is noticed.
  • Stretch marks appear on the belly and the side of the chest.
  • Dark patches on the cheeks, nose, forehead, and upper lip.

Sleep Cycle: Sleep is disturbed due to nasal congestion, body aches, frequent urination, and hormonal changes.

Significant Changes in the Baby

  • The baby will weight close to 1 kg by the end of the second trimester.
  • Around week 16, tiny protective hairs called lanugo begin to grow on the body.
  • By the 19th week, a greasy protective layer called vernix caseosa forms on the skin.
  • The digestive system is fully formed by the end of the third trimester.
  • The baby’s senses begin to develop around the 22nd week.
  • The brain controls most of the activities including the movement of limbs and the heartbeat.

Care During the Second Trimester of Pregnancy

Here are some tips to make the second trimester more enjoyable:

General Health

  • Increase your calorie consumption to 2000-2200 calories a day.
  • Have balanced meals that include proteins, fiber, vitamins and minerals, omega-3 fatty acids and carbohydrates.
  • Continue your prenatal supplements.
  • Keep your skin moisturized and avoid chemical based products on the skin and hair.
  • Drink plenty of water to avoid water retention.
  • Engage in mild exercise and relaxation techniques.
  • Keep your leg elevated in case of swelling.
  • Take warm baths to relieve body aches.
  • Sleep on your left side with some support for your belly for better sleep.

Symptoms that Should Be Checked

  • Sudden weight gains and increased edema.
  • Itchy skin followed by nausea, fatigue, jaundice, and loss of appetite.
  • Extreme thirst
  • Frequent and copious urination.
  • Vision change
  • Vaginal bleeding
  • High fever over 101 degrees
  • Severe pain in the abdomen

Medical Tests

  • Routine checkup including blood pressure and weight check and fetal heart rate monitoring.
  • A level two ultrasound must be scheduled between 18 and 22 weeks.
  • Get your glucose levels screened to prevent gestational diabetes.
  • Genetic Screening tests like NIPT, quad screen and amniocentesis are recommended.


Read More : Baby Development Month By Month

Third Trimester Pregnancy Details

Third Trimester

This is the last leg of your pregnancy starts at Week 28 and lasts until delivery. You need to take utmost care of yourself to prepare for labor and delivery.

Significant changes in the Mother’s Body

The various changes that occur in this stage are as follows:

Weight: You will continue to gain 0.5 to 1 kg each month.


  • Heartburn and constipation
  • Shortness of breath
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Fatigue
  • Braxton Hicks Contractions
  • Back and body aches
  • Lack of balance
  • Lack of bladder control

Physical Changes

  • The belly becomes large and is inclined as the baby descends downwards into the pelvis.
  • The breasts begin to secrete colostrum, the first milk.
  • Hemorrhoids occur.
  • Swelling of the limbs.

Sleep Cycle: As the discomfort increases with the growing weight of the baby, you will find it harder to sleep towards the end of your pregnancy.

Significant Changes in the Baby

The baby begins to descend into the pelvis to prepare for birth. The other changes are as follows:

  • In the 7th and 8th month the bones are formed fully
  • The skin becomes opaque by the 32nd week and the lanugo is shed.
  • The digestive system develops and produces the meconium, the baby’s first poop.
  • The five senses are fully developed
  • The brain begins to grow at a rapid rate.

Care During the Third Trimester of Pregnancy

Make sure you follow these tips in the third trimester.

General Health

  • Increase calorie consumption to 2400 calories each day.
  • Include nutrients like Calcium, Folic acid, Iron, vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Protein, Omega 3 fatty acids and fiber in your diet.
  • Get as much rest as you can.
  • Use a pregnancy pillow for maximum support when you sleep.
  • Use a good bra with bra pads to support the breasts.
  • Stay hydrated to prevent Braxton Hicks Contractions.
  • Stay Active
  • Wear compression socks to relieve leg pain.

Symptoms that Should Be Checked

Medical Tests

  • Routine checkup including fetal heart rate monitoring, weight, and blood pressure check.
  • Internal pelvic exam to check for softening of cervix and dilation.
  • Tests for glucose levels, Strep B infections and anemia
  • Biophysical and non-stress tests for high risk women.

Also read:  Third Month Pregnancy

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